On any given week we eliminate gluten, sugar and most dairy from our diet. Gluten because it makes me exhausted with headaches - not my favorite combination. Sugar because it makes us all crazy and dairy because the baby can't handle it without his nose being a snot faucet.
We make plenty of exceptions and this week has been one. The in-laws are in town and we are accommodating our diet to theirs. It's the right thing to do as they are our honored guest and we want to please them and make them most comfortable. The kids have been in a bread, cheese, restaurant and sugar heaven - I have been on a coffee high since they've been here.
Sometimes I get down about how difficult it is to feed my family real food, especially since our family is growing. I'm often tempted to think that it's not worth it, or even the best thing for us because of the strain on time and finances.
This week has changed my mind.
My blood sugar problems have come back with a vengeance (it's been about a year since I've experienced any issues) and I AM A GRUMPY MOMMA. Watch out. This week I have learned again that I am utterly lacking in so many virtues. Dear Lord, please help me and help my kids! When I was pregnant with my first (and eating whatever I pleased, thank you) I could barely peel myself out of bed in the morning. Well, that was pretty much my whole life. I didn't know any different because I was practically born tired. These days I have three children with needs in the morning and I don't have a choice but to get out of bed and greet my duties for the day. With a smile? No. I have not been smiling.
It's going to be hard getting back on track with eating better but I realize it's a must for me. If I love my children and my husband I will absolutely take care of myself so that I can care for them. I need to be aware and disciplined about my food choices, it's not just about me anymore, it's about those I love. If I want to be more present, loving, patient and virtuous - I need to eat well.
I think it's easy to not realize when we are doing better unless we start feeling awful again, that was this week. I'm having memories of college, waking up with a very swollen face and a NEED to eat asap, and not being able to stay awake all day. Why did it take me so long to realize that I had food issues? haha, I have no idea.
My nonchalant attitude towards food and health changed when my daughter was 8 months old and I never want to look back. I admire those who feel great and seem unaffected by their food choices - good for them! (with a slight tinge of jealousy!)
Of course the choices I make surrounding food don't in any way excuse my impatient and grumpy behavior to my children, that I need to bring to God in the confessional and beg Him for help. But I know what makes it easier to practice virtues of patience and love - and I need all the help I can!
I am re-reading The Story of a Soul by St. Therese of the Child Jesus, because I know that the little way is all I can strive for these days. There is no other path for me but offering and loving these very small trials of my day. These little things are as simple as the toddler's fourth potty accident or lifting and holding a two year old who's crying. So extremely small and seemingly unimportant, but this is my sanctity. I cannot strive for anything more than loving and embracing God's will for me this morning. No, actually what He's given me this moment.
God in His infinite mercy has bestowed on me the trials of every day life because He loves.
He loves me more tenderly than the love that I have for my three children and that I can hardly fathom.
“Then, overcome by joy, I cried, 'Jesus, my love. At last I have found my vocation. My vocation is love. In the heart of the Church, my mother, I will be love, and then I will be all things.” - St. Therese of the Child Jesus